Travelling cheap is both a blunder and huge opportunity. Trying to stick with some committed budget makes you get selective about activities you choose and creative about getting the most out of every opportunity.
if anything, Hong Kong is not cheap, but it does not mean you cannot experience the hell out of it with next to no money
Here are some suggestions:
Starting with the mundane: take the bus from the airport – it’s 4 times cheaper than MTR and you will see a lot of the city from the second deck, it also has free wi-fi on board.
Save some money and do not buy a local sim card: HK gov wi-fi works fantastically in all public areas, each shopping mall offers free connection and there always is a McDonalds or Starbucks around.
The Peak is a must-see and is extremely popular for its stunning view of the city. Generally, tourists would go up by historical tram ($11.5 for a return ticket – what a waste) and then get to the rooftop of the shopping mall to enjoy the view (another $10 per person).
- Skip the tram and go up by foot. It will take you about an hour, but the hike is very nice and costs you zero, you can then return by bus to the city centre – just $1.25 for the ticket
- Do not go to the rooftop, instead follow the signs for Lugard road, the view is the same and absolutely free!
- To get the most out of The Peak arrive 30 min before sunset, the view is truly stunning in the twilight
- If you are into sports try running the circular road around The Peak, it has its own segment in strava, it’s time to beat the locals!
HK Metro system is just fantastic, but when you just need to get cross the harbour the ferry is much cheaper and nicer. Take a ride in the evening to enjoy the famous HK skyline from the water.
Talking of the skyline, a free laser show starts daily at 8pm, you can watch it from the Avenue of Stars, but come early if you want good pictures from the front row.
Kowloon park has a great outdoor swimming pool, that you can go to for just $2 (just use the Octopus card to pay your way). While this is not exactly a SPA, relaxing in the pool in a hot and sweaty Asian New York is epic in itself.
Kowloon park houses a bunch of pink flamingos and has a small aviary, in Hong Kong park the aviary is bigger and houses a huge variety of birds. All of this is absolutely free!
While you are in the park, join locals for a Tai Chi practice (or at least watch them perform and listen to the relaxing music). Seems that classes are on from sunrise to well after sunset.
Treat yourself to the day at the beach at Stanley. The tour guides would suggest to visit the market, but in truth it’s very touristic and just sells a bunch of china-made souvenirs, skip it, buy some fruit at a local supermarket and go get yourself a nice tan at the beach.
Temples, markets and monasteries are free of charge – explore.
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